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Rugby World Cup: Cave shows support for Ulster and Ireland mate Payne

By Jonathan Bradley

Angry Darren Cave stood up for his Ulster and Ireland team-mate Jared Payne, under fire from World Cup critics.

Payne is filling the outside centre berth, vacated by Brian O'Driscoll, at the World Cup and the latest criticism came from former Ulster coach Matt Williams who in his role as a TV pundit said that the naturalised Kiwi made "really poor decisions" against Romania despite Ireland scoring six tries.

Both Tommy Bowe and O'Driscoll himself have already rubbished the statements and Cave added: "If it was me I would probably be pretty annoyed.

"It can be frustrating when guys are just throwing out opinions which aren't based on facts of what actually happened in the game.

"Then, suddenly, that becomes everyone else's opinion, guys who've had a couple of beers and watched the game.

"Then after a week it's the perception of half the nation and it's just completely false.

"We'll deal with facts not opinions."

Stephen Ferris, critical of Williams' Ulster tenure in his recently released autobiography, also took to Twitter yesterday to strongly disagree with the statements as Ireland continue their preparations to face Italy at the Olympic Stadium on Sunday.

Belfast Telegraph


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